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June/July events! 



Summer - Oil on canvas - by Bisat from DeviantArt

It's summertime! Oh, how I love Georgia summers. :-)

So, if you are a new reader to my blog/website, here's the story. A few years ago, I started a Facebook group called Atlanta Bohemians, a group for any and all kinds of artists in the Atlanta metro area to promote their events, post about auditions/calls for entries, or where art supporters can find information about independent and local musicians, actors, playwrights, screenwriters, film makers, painters, sculptors, poets, authors, and any other kind of artist you can think of. I started sending out monthly lists of different artistic events around the city, and I got a great response.

When I started this website, I thought I would move those lists over to my blog. Because I wanted the website to not only be about me promoting my own artistic projects, but I also wanted to promote and support other local and/or independent artists. I try to do that in other ways too, sharing poetry that I like in my "Poem of the Week," posting photography and art pieces from independent artists on my blog entries, posting music sharing podcasts where I share independent music, etc. I just love art so much. And I think there is nothing more powerful than going to that show where the band plays a song that reaches out to you or going to a play that just completely speaks to you or hearing a poem that just sucks you in or staring at a painting and being incredibly overwhelmed by the complex beauty in life. Art is a reflection of life, art helps us appreciate life, the good, the bad, everything becomes beautiful. I know nothing has helped me more in my own life to really be in the moment, to have real spiritual experiences, to really feel a universal love for everyone and everything than a perfect piece of art at the perfect time. And actually, you don't have to sit in the audience of a hugely popular Broadway musical or go see paintings by artists who have been dead for centuries or turn on the radio to find this art. It's everywhere. It's all around you. And there are tons of living, breathing artists who are writing songs, painting paintings, taking photographs, writing screenplays, making films, performing spoken word, etc. in spite of their 9 to 5 day jobs or their waitressing jobs or their bartending jobs or their low-paying non-profit jobs. And these artists truly inspire me. Working at places like The Georgia Ballet or Horizon Theatre and seeing these people work 60 hours a week for very little pay just because they love art. And if I can inspire one person to go out there and see an original, new play or see a local, unknown band or see an art exhibit from a living Atlanta artist or see an independent film made by a local filmmaker, then it's completely worth it to me.

SO! With that in mind, here are a bunch of awesome things you can do in June and July to support the local artists! And of course, if I have forgotten anything, please leave a comment.

Visual Arts




June 5th - 27th - Young Blood Gallery - "Interior/Posterior" with 6 women artists Megan Kimber, Merrilee Challis, Daisy Winfrey, Chrystal Chan, Jennifer Davis & Lesley Reppeteaux



June 12th - July 4th - Beep Beep Gallery - "The Big Bang" a solo exhibit of new work by Matt Relkin



Friday, June 18th - ASI Gallery - works by Laura Rubio - Opening reception June 18 , 2010 - 7 - 9:30pm - Free admission - Exhibition will run from June 18 - July 18, 2010



July 9th - September 19th - Atlanta Contemporary Art Center - Amy Myers: Feminine Space

Friday, July 16th - Art Party. 30+ artists showing. No theme. Its an art show that morphs into a party with Bands & DJs. Free drinks, $10 donation. 21+. More artists are always welcome. Visit www.dooGallery.com for more information.



Music


Saturday, June 19th - Five Spot - Wade in the Rhythm, Cloudeater, Dan Marshall Project with special guests including Dre-Money - 21+ - 9PM - Advanced Tickets: 7$

Saturday, June 26th - Star Bar - Howlies - Coathangers - Balkans - Mermaids - 21+ - 8$ - 9 PM

Thursday, July 1st - Star Bar - FREE THURSDAY SHOW! - Abby GoGo - Carnivores - Grenadines - 21+ - FREE - 9PM

Wednesday, July 7th - Smith's Olde Bar - James David Carter- Glen Pridgen Band - Brandon Perry - 21+ - 8PM

Saturday, July 10th - Wonderroot - Littlefoot, Cloudmouth, Revo - 9PM

Saturday, July 17th - Star Bar - The Selmanaires - with special guest, Adron - 21+ - 8$ - 9PM



Theatre



Tuesday, June 15th - WORKING TITLE PLAYWRIGHTS Presents Theroun D'arcy Patterson's SEMBLANCES - Staged Reading - Academy Theatre 119 Center St., Avondale Estates, Ga. - 7:30 PM - FREE to WTP members / $5 suggested donation all others at door.

June 12th and 13th - Harvest 2010 The Backyard Plays - Onion Man Productions - A new collection of nine 10-Minute plays by local playwrights!

June 11th - June 27th - A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum - Atlanta Lyric Theatre

June 9th - June 27th
- Reasons to be pretty by Neil LaBute - Pinch n' Ouch Theatre 

July 7th - August 7th - 12th Annual Essential Play Festival - Featuring three plays, Qualities of Starlight by Gabriel Jason Dean, directed by Peter Hardy, Darker Face of the Earth by Rita Dove, directed by Betty Hart, Sally and Glen at the Palace by Peter Hardy, directed by Ellen McQueen



Call for Entries/Submissions

Seeking bands and artists! Children's Restoration Network is trying to break the Guinness World Record for the longest concert by multiple artists at the Red Rabbit in Johns Creek. They are still looking for bands and artists who want to participate, people who want to volunteer to be witnesses, and just people who want to come out and enjoy it all. It will take place from July 10th - July 24th. Learn more at www.worldslongestconcert.com or email Richie Tyre at richie@childrn.org.



Other

Java Monkey Speaks - Open Mic Poetry - Every Sunday at 8:00 pm - Java Monkey coffee shop - Decatur

Friday, July 2nd
- DODEKAPUS PRESENTS: CARNIVAL FUNDRAISER FOR LIVING WALLS - A carnival themed event with games, prizes, food, booze, bands, kiddi pools, a kissing booth, tarot booth, giant twister, screenprinting on site, and much much more - 5:00 PM



There you go, guys. Lots of awesome events to make your summer fun :-)

And I'll leave you with a poem. It's sort of my ode to summers in Georgia.


Georgia June Outside of a Coffee Shop

by Sara Crawford


Thursday night in Georgia June,
outside sitting,
sipping on hot coffee,
with a splash of hazelnut.
Everyone around me sweats bullets, slurping
on smoothies and iced lattes.
To me, the night air is a warm
blanket covered
in stars and fireflies that twinkle
through the sheets.

My bones are growing as we all rotate
through space, but I don’t feel
any older
than the teenager sitting next to me,
her bare feet propped on the chair
in front of her,
toenails painted neon green, her flip-flops (practically made
of straw) are scattered
lazily on the ground beside her.
She laughs, and I laugh with her as if
I am a part of the conversation,
peering at her feet from behind
my magazine.

A couple exits the coffee shop,
opening the door
behind me.
The air conditioning escapes
from inside, whispers to my skin.
Goosebumps rising, I shiver.
The door closes.
I sigh with relief and wrap myself
up in the night, sinking into
Georgia June.



April events! 



Photo by Beverly Crawford

SPRING IS FINALLY HERE! I couldn't be more excited. I always feel like spring is the most hopeful time of the year. For me, anyway.

So. I was at Lenny's last night seeing The Judies, and I was thinking (as I do often), "Wow, there is so much good music going on in Atlanta! I'm so glad to be here right now." Seriously, guys. You can go to any venue in Atlanta virtually any time of the week and see incredible musicians. They're everywhere! And there's music for everyone! The Atlanta music scene is such a great one. You guys should all go take advantage of that!

On that note, there are a lot of great things going on in April, and I thought I'd share my picks for the month with you so you can go check them out! :-)

MUSIC
THEATRE
  • Lookingglass Alice at the Alliance Theatre - 3/31/10 - 5/2/10 - Defy logic – and gravity – in a topsy-turvy, timeless tale of a little girl who journeys through the looking glass to become a queen. Marvel as Alice floats, falls, and flies overhead in a radically reconfigured Alliance Stage. It’s a dizzyingly playful feat of ingenious wonder, peppered with playful acrobatics certain to awaken the kid in all of us. Once you pass through this looking glass, you may never want to come back out!
     
  • THE SHOW! - Out of Hand Theatre - at Horizon Theatre - 4/2/10 - 6/18/10 - A 60 minute late-night Freak Show, Out of Hand style. The Show! is never the same twice because the audience runs The Show. A ridiculously interactive Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Event, The Show! is wild, big fun!!!!
     
  • 100 Saints You Should Know - Actor's Express - 3/18/10 - 4/17/10 - The lives of five people collide in this emotionally charged drama about unraveling faith and the redemptive power of human connection. While Matthew is on an enforced furlough from the priesthood, he seeks refuge at the home of his curious and devout mother. He is followed by Theresa, the rectory’s cleaning lady, who is desperately searching for meaning and completion while trying her best to raise her unruly teenage daughter alone. Through vividly poignant character sketches, we find sometimes that God really is in the details – even when those details get messy. Featuring Carolyn Cook.

VISUAL ARTS
  • Fight or Flight - New work by Kelly McKernan - Beep Beep Gallery - Opening Saturday, April 10th 8:00 pm through May 2nd - In this newest body of work, Kelly McKernan continues to explore her psychological responses to the stresses and struggles of reality. While much of her previous work commented on the consequences of using idealism as a coping mechanism, “Fight or Flight” takes a more direct and personal approach by addressing these responses in terms of biological survival tactics.
     
  • Cartoon Madness 5 - The Lunchbox Show - Alcove Arts Gallery - Opening Saturday, April 10th 8:00 pm - For thirty-five years, metal lunch boxes were a critical accessory for school kids. Starting with the Hopalong Cassidy model in 1951, a lunch box could be a child's most personal statement. While the exterior let everyone know what was the coolest new TV show or pop music group, the interior neatly housed a meal of your choosing (with help from Mom).
     
  • Conor McGrady - On Foreign Soil - Saltworks Gallery - March 19 through April 24 - SALTWORKS is pleased to present On Foreign Soil, featuring new works on paper by New York-based artist Conor McGrady. The exhibition will be on view from March 19, 2010 through April 24, 2010. This is the third solo exhibition on McGrady's work at the gallery.


OTHER EVENTS
  • Collective Conscious Art Show - Friday, April 9th - 8:00 pm - 431 Fair St. SW, Atlanta, GA 30313
     
  • Extremity Experiment - Open Mic Night - Saturday, April 24 - 6:00 pm - Atlanta Contemporary Art Center - As always, we welcome singers, poets and musicians to bless the mic and those looking to network. This experiment will be sure to enlighten and entertain all of your senses.
     
  • Rocky Horror Picture Show at Frolicon - For all of you convention goers out there, make sure you check out Rocky Horror Friday, April 2nd at Midnight (Technically Saturday...). I'll be playing Janet this year and it's carnival themed! Should be a lot of fun!!
     
  • Talking Back to the Muse - Saturday, April 17th - 8:00 pm - Composition Gallery - Poetry Atlanta and Composition Gallery in Candler Park team up for this special evening to celebrate National Poetry Month on Saturday, April 17, 8 p.m. Favorite Atlanta poets will be reading a classic poem followed by a response, rebuttal or rant of their own. It's sure to be a unique evening of poetry.
     

There you go, guys! Lots of incredibly awesome things to check out. I'm definitely going to be at several of those events! So get out there and support your local and independent artists! Share the art! You never know what you'll experience. You could go to a show and the band could play that perfect song that you need to hear, you could see a painting that really touches you, you could see a play that makes you laugh your ass off. There is all kinds of wonderful art going on in Atlanta, so get out there and experience it!

If I missed an event that you'd like to share, make sure you leave a comment here on the blog!

Random thoughts - Music, theatre, and awesomeness 



Photo by Oberonia Photography

I thought I'd just write a random blog.

Blog. Isn't that word funny? Say it twenty times. It's kind of funny, isn't it?

I'm listening to Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros at the moment, and it's making me feel rather optimistic, I must say. There has been a lot of great music that I've been listening to lately. I promise I will have my music sharing podcast ready by next week. So, I was watching an abbreviated version of American Idol the other day (abbreviated as in recorded on the DVR and fast fowarded through most of it). I don't really know why. All that show is is a glorified karaoke contest. And then even when there's someone on there that I actually like (it does happen sometimes...like Bo Bice) when they get off the show and make an album, they make them sing these really shitty pop songs, which of course they didn't write. Why can't we have American Open Mic Night? Where we get original artists on there to do their original songs? I guess no one would watch that. People don't want to hear new music. But that can't be totally true, can it? They play new music on the radio. They used to play new music on MTV back when they actually played music videos. So let's get some new original music on American Idol. Let's have American Open Mic Night! (Yeah, that will still probably never happen.)

There are a lot of live shows that I'm excited about. Recently, I got to see Laura Veirs at the Star Bar. She and her backing band (the Hall of Flames) played a really killer set. I still think the Star Bar is a weird venue for her, though, and I would have liked to see her at Eddie's Attic or somewhere like that. There's always tons of trendy people just being loud and obnoxious in the Star Bar. Usually the bands are so loud there, though, that it doesn't really matter. And people who want to listen to the music can, and people who want to be loud and obnoxious can, and it works out for everyone! Laura Veirs, though, had a more mellow set than any other band I've ever seen there, and at times it was hard to listen. I swear, there was this girl standing behind me who did not stop talking the entire set! It would have been hillarious if I weren't trying to listen to Laura Veirs. It was getting ridiculous. The viola player (Alex Guy) would be in the middle of a really amazing part, and the girl behind me would just be rambling on..."You know, I played violin in high school, and I was really bad! I just never practiced, you know? I was like the 15th chair! They had 14 chairs on stage and they shoved me off stage halfway in the curtain! It was awful! I just didn't care about it, though. And then it wasn't until later that I was like 'Oh, man, I really should have practiced!'" Meanwhile, we're all thinking, "Hey, why don't you shut up so we can listen to someone who can play?" It was still a really great show though, and I'm really loving her new album, July Flame. I almost bought it on vinyl when I was at the show, but it was 20 bucks, and I was broke. (I don't really know what I was expecting...hehe.)

I have this new obsession with listening to vinyl records. It feels like a much more tangible music listening experience than listening to songs on an MP3 player or even a CD. My vinyl collection so far is pretty tiny, but I just added Siamese Dream by the Smashing Pumpkins and Teen Dream by Beach House to it. One of my old favorites and one of my new favorites. Speaking of Beach House, I'm so incredibly in love with Teen Dream. If you haven't listened to it, I recommend doing that!

(But I'm foreshadowing my music sharing podcast now!)

In other news, I got to see The Tales of Edgar Allan Poe at The Center for Puppetry Arts last weekend. I hadn't seen a show there since I was a kid, and I had never been to their museum. They have so many cool things in there! Pieces from The Labyrinth and all of these Jim Henson puppets and Fraggle Rock stuff and other really interesting puppets. I feel like CGI kind of killed the art of the puppet, at least in movies. Anyway, I really loved how they wove all of the Edgar Allan Poe stories together, all of the interesting musical instruments that the musical accompanist was playing, and of course the actual puppets themselves. The puppets and the set were very innovative and creepy. And seeing a number of Poe's stories back to back like that reminds you of how disturbing they all are. But the whole show was very well done. I definitely plan on going to see another show there sometime soon.

Tomorrow is a good day for me both in terms of theatre and music. During the day, I'm having my first read-through of Community Service, the play that I'm working on for the Horizon Theatre Apprentice Company. So this year's apprentices will get to see it for the first time tomorrow. I really hope they like it! It's a completely ridiculous comedy filled with art made out of PBR cans (P-B-Art if you will), gender neutral pronouns, Jeopardy! questions, and slightly gay rednecks. Anyway, after that, I'm heading over to the Gwinnett Center to see Muse and the Silversun Pickups with my little brother, who got tickets for Christmas, and is taking me! (Because he rocks. Read his music blog.) Then on Sunday, we're doing a Long Absent Friends photoshoot with Alisha Gaspard, who if you'll recall took all of the badass Painted cast photos (and the photo above!). So, this weekend is looking pretty exciting for me, in spite of it being the LONGEST WINTER EVER.

In other news, I have found that there are some people out there who are always going to do whatever they can to bring you down. This is something that a lot of people I care about have been having issues with lately, something I've been having issues with lately. And I'm not just talking about in the artistic community, either. This applies to life in general. I'd just like to say, though, than nine times out of ten, these people are just really insecure and unhappy with their own lives, and the only way they know to try to be happy is to make other people unhappy. Or instead of outwardly projecting how insecure they are, they outwardly project condescending arrogance and act like they're better than other people. I'm trying really hard not to be judgmental, here. I don't think most of these people are consciously aware of what they're doing. But I think it's important to just try to do the best you can for who you are and not worry about other people who appear to be unsupportive or negative towards you. For every unsupportive bitchy person I have in my life, there are at least ten other people who are supportive and understand that I'm doing the best I can with what I've got. Just some food for thought. I guess the moral of this story is "Some people are bitches, but don't let them get you down." (Didn't I say that at one of my shows recently? I feel like that's becoming a slogan. Haha.)

But February is almost over, spring is almost here! and there are so many awesome things to be excited about right now. There's Girl Scout cookies, Beach House shows, people around me getting married and having babies and being very excited about the new stages in their lives, hillarious theatre, pool games, cheap beer, Bad Cat calendars, crafty glittery projects, Rocky Horror, old books, Radiohead, live music, dancing, being goofy, crying for no reason, life. There are so many wonderful people doing wonderful things all around me, so much to laugh about and dance around to and learn from and love.

(Yes, I'm being a hippy. It's okay, though, because I still take showers and have a job. :-p)

Cool stuff to do in February!! 



Waterfall at Roswell Mill by Gareth Botha


Well February is here! Time for Valentine's Day, wishing it was warmer outside, getting really sick of the whole winter thing, birthdays for Aquarians, all of that crap!

If you've got the "I'm sick of winter" blues, here is a bunch of really cool artistic stuff for you to do! Lots of choices, so don't ever say I didn't tell you about anything cool to do!


Music


- TONIGHT! February 2nd - My band, Long Absent Friends, will be playing at Lenny's Bar along with Goodland, Transloader, and Aftermath. (Goodland features Geoff Goodwin and Chase Adkinson, who I played with in Novo Luna.) Goodland will be on at 9:00 PM, Long Absent Friends at 10:00 PM. The cover is 6 dollars - 21+ - Lenny's Bar - 486 Decatur Street Southeast, Atlanta, GA 30312

- February 4th - Nobody's Darlings, Ordain, The Mitch Hansen Band, and The Issues - 9:00 pm - 6 bucks - 21+ Lenny's Bar - 486 Decatur Street Southeast, Atlanta, GA 30312

- February 4th - Lindsay Appel, Lexi Street & Soul ShakersThe EARL! - 9:00 pm - 7 bucks - 21+

- February 4th - Haji Basim - Library Coffee Company - 2523 Caldwell Rd NE - Atlanta, GA

- February 19th - Trances Arc, The Modern Society, The Biters - The Earl - Atlanta, GA - 9:00 pm - 7 bucks

- February 20th - Elliott Rubin - 8:00 PM at The Uptown Loft, Johns Creek, Georgia - Cost: $5

- February 20th - Laura Veirs & The Hall Of Flames, Cataldo, The Old Believers - Star Bar - 9:00 pm - 12 dollars

- February 26th - Kim Boekbinder of Vermillion Lies, Adron, Rita of Helen Keller's Ukulele - The Drunken Unicorn - $5 for 21+, $7 for 18+

- February 27th - Blair Crimmins & The Hookers, A Fight to the Death - Star Bar - 9:00 pm - 8 dollars




Theatre/Dance

- February 13th - The Voodoo Revue: A Mardi Gras Masquerade! Come and enjoy a night of mayhem and excitement as The Collective transports you back to a time of voodoo magic and old New Orleans. This is event is a fundraiser for The Collective and our newest work Rising Sons performing at 7 Stages February 18th-21st. -  We will have three amazing bands performing, including Skylights and H.M.S. Disco. Also, enjoy comedy, magic, and other acts from Collective performers!  -  The cover is $10 (cash only, please!) and the event is BYOB (must be 21 to drink!) Doors open at 8pm and the show starts at 9pm.  -  Don't forget your mask and your dancing shoes! It is sure to be a fantastic time!

- January 22 - February 7 - Relapse Theatre presents Clive Barker's "A History of the Devil," running January 22 through February 7, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Friday and Saturday performances begin at 7:30, Sunday performances at 5:00. Tickets are $10 at the door, First Come, First Serve!

- February 5th and 6th, 2010 - doors at 7:00 p.m. - Spectrum: Mythos at The Georgia Ballet Studios - Join The Georgia Ballet for an incredible evening of extraordinary performances that showcase the company in contemporary and inventive new choreography! Spectrum: Mythos, An Evening of New Works will include a one hour dance showcase performance, live music, food and drink, and a silent auction with fun and exciting items for everyone.

- February 12 - March 14 - Shooting Star by Steven Dietz at Horizon Theatre - Sparks fly and snowflakes fall as two old flames meet by chance in a blizzard bound airport. Reed, a suit-and-tie with Blackberry, and Elana, a bohemian with rain stick, were once idealistic college lovers. Here they reconnect and share stories deep into the night. Humor, heartache, secrets, and snow. When morning comes and all flights are cleared for departure – what’s the final destination for these two? A delicious, bittersweet comedy with heart and bite.

- Jan 29 - Feb 21 - Alliance Theatre - Tennis in Nablus, A World Premiere by Ismail Khalidi -  Palestine. 1939. Allegiances… and identities… are never what they seem. Under British colonial rule, two nations buckle under conflicting claims to their rightful land. And as the world explodes around them, one divided family seeks to achieve the delicate balance between peace and freedom.




Visual arts

- February 4 - Eyedrum - Ayed Hallim: Instrumentalities - Opening reception for a Small Gallery show of new assemblage works by Atlanta bricoleur Ayed Hallim. Hallim, the pseudonymous alter ego of a former local arts journalist, creates works in found metal, spent packaging, and other repurposed materials. After the reception, Hallim performs during Open Improv on some of the "perjunction" instruments included in the exhibition. Exhibition on view through February 21.

- February 5 - "Columns, Stacks, Heaps, and Piles" by Justin Richel - Young Blood Gallery - Starting Friday, February 5th, YBG will be displaying a series of small-scale works on paper by Justin Richel. This series will focus on small and affordable works from the "Sweets" series.

- February  6 - Art Papers 11th Annual Art Auction - 7:00 to 10:00 pm - Mason Murer Fine Art

- February 13 - March 7 - Beep Beep Gallery - Material - "Material" is a group sculpture featuring five artists working in a variety of media. Artists include: Lucha Rodriguez, Romy Maloon, Crystal Wagner, Chase Folsom, Jessica Orlowski



There you go! Tons of awesome artists to go out and support! :-)

As always, leave a comment if I've left something out.

Stay tuned for another podcast full of music sharing and awesomeness. (Like a mixy but with me talking in between songs so it's legal!)





Various updates!  



One Day by Carmen Lamarium


Here's what's going on with me lately:

  • Unsent Letters promotion - First of all, thanks so much to everyone for being so supportive of me and this album. I have sold more CDs than I ever could have imagined, and everyone has been awesome about helping me get it out there. The CD is now up on iTunes and Amazon.com! I am also on Last FM, and I'm working hard on getting my music on Pandora.com. (Thanks to everyone who sent e-mails to them by the way! It really made a difference as they're actually paying attention, now!) Also, I have sent copies of the CD out to several college radio stations, including the Georgia Music Show on Album 88, which comes on Wednesdays from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. So all of you Atlantans (Atlantians? Atlantans? I don't know...people who live in Atlanta!) tune into that, call up the station (404-413-9727), and request one of my tunes!
     
  • New music, photos, and videos up on the website! - I put up a bunch of free new songs on my music page! There's a live version of "Wait" from open mic night at Ragamuffin, a Slowdive cover that I did, an acoustic version of a Long Absent Friends song, an old Ruby song, and an old Novo Luna song! You can download them for free, here. Also, my friend Amanda (aka Carmen Lamarium) put up a couple of videos on YouTube from my CD release show at Smith's. I've put those on my photos/videos page, or you can go to YouTube. Here's a link for me playing my acoustic version of "Bridge" (actually a Novo Luna song), and here's "Rainwater." Also, I put up some new Long Absent Friends pictures on my photos/videos page, so check that out!
     
  • Upcoming play production, Community Service - My one act play, Community Service (working title), will be staged and performed by the Horizon Theatre Apprentice Company this May! Recently, I got to see this year's Apprentice Company in the 2010 Joint Stock Project, and I have to say, I was very impressed! I'm looking forward to working with these actors and the wonderful people at Horizon Theatre again. :-) More details to come about this show!
     
  • Upcoming music shows:
    -
    Long Absent Friends will be playing at Lenny's with Goodland (featuring Geoff Goodwin and Chase Adkinson, who I played with in Novo Luna) - Tuesday, February 2nd. The show starts at 9:00 pm, it's 21+, and the cover is 6 bucks. I hope to see you all there!
    - I will have another solo show at Smith's Olde Bar (in the Atlanta Room) on Friday, March 19th at 10:00 pm, so mark your calendars! Let's pack the place out again like we did in December! That was such a blast.
     
  • Send me your events! I'll be updating my "events" blog for February pretty soon, so if you have any upcoming plays, music shows, poetry/literature events, visual arts events, dance events, etc., please send them my way! You can e-mail them to me at sara@saracrawford.net. (I'll also put them on my Atlanta Bohemians group on Facebook.) And I will try to make it out if I can! I absolutely love supporting local, new, and independent artists, and I love being exposed to new and interesting works. There is so much going on, and Atlanta has such a thriving artistic scene. I'm so excited to be a part of it! (I know I've said all of that before, but I'm just so excited, I have to repeat myself!)
     
  • All of my links in one place: A bunch of people have asked me recently for various links to my various pages around the web, so here you go!
    - Sara Crawford on Myspace
    - Sara Crawford on Facebook
    - Sara Crawford on Last FM
    - Sara Crawford EPK on Sonicbids
    - Sara Crawford on iTunes
    - Sara Crawford on Amazon
    - Long Absent Friends on Myspace
    - Long Absent Friends on Facebook
Thanks again to everyone! I have absolutely the most supportive and awesome friends/fans, and I'm finally at a place in my life where I feel like I'm really getting my art out there and people are appreciating it. I definitely would not be in that place without all of you. So to everyone who actually takes the time to listen to my music, read my writing, come to my shows, come see my plays, or even read my blog on my website, I am extremely grateful. (I know, I've said all of this before, too, but you really can't say things like that enough, I don't think.) So, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for supporting me and my artistic projects. :-) :-)

I will leave you with a live version of "Wait" from the open mic night I recently played at Ragamuffin. Enjoy!

Random thoughts - why I'm not a music critic, Horizon Theatre rocks, other ramblings about art 



For the Love of Music by pa gillet on flickr

I feel like updating a totally random blog. (Because that's really what I should be doing right now...But I seem to be the queen of procrastinating by distracting myself with totally useless activities on the internet. "OH! I need to take this 'Which Literary Movement Are You?' Quiz on Facebook!")

I'm currently listening to The Killers. Say what you want, but I love The Killers. This is why no one can call me a music snob. Because, sure, I may listen to totally obscure bands who no one has ever heard of (except maybe their roommates when they're playing really loud in the apartment), but I also love The Killers, Michael Jackson, Lady Antebellum, and Hanson. Yes, Hanson. I said it! Those kids were like 13 when they first came out, and they all played instruments and wrote their own songs, which is more than you can say for most of the Disney-channel teen pop stars of today. And you know, in an mmm-bop, it really is all gone, people.

I have some super exciting things coming up that I'm, well, excited about. Playing a benefit show for Haiti with Long Absent Friends, my upcoming poetry book, upcoming play production. (The Apprentice Company at Horizon Theatre will be performing one of my plays in May.) (I'd tell you more about the play, but it's still in development...*cough*.) (That's the procrastinating playwright's way of saying "I'm still writing it.") Anyway, I'm really excited to be working with Horizon again. They're just a really great theatre company with great people. The building feels a little bit like home to me. Ever since my time in the Young Playwrights Festival in the summer of 2008, I've felt really comfortable there, like I can just write and express myself as an artist and grow and develop. The workshops I've been through there, whether it was at the YPF or during my time as a playwriting apprentice last year, have been the most helpful workshops ever. No one was snooty or pretentious, but they told me how it was. I heart Horizon Theatre. They're supportive of new works and local playwrights, and they just put on really great plays.

You know, on a totally different subject, I had a lot of fun during my time being an album reviewer for Have You Heard and Atlanta Guardian, and I learned a lot, but I don't think being a critic is for me. Ultimately, I feel like all art has value (yes, even Rebecca Martin's album that I totally trashed on Have You Heard). Because while I might fall asleep when listening to Rebecca Martin, someone else somewhere could pop that CD in and be in tears, thinking it's the most beautiful thing they've ever heard. All art is subjective, all art has value, and I don't really think that there's much value in comparing art. For example, how can you compare Bob Dylan to Radiohead and say which one is "better"? Sure, there are some technical standards in any art form. But does being able to play the guitar better than any other person make you a better artist? There are some paintings that I've seen where you could tell the artist was extremely talented, but they didn't make me feel anything. There was no emotion in them. And I was watching American Idol the other night (I don't know why!) and I was thinking a lot of my absolute favorite singers would be crucified if they went on that show as unknown musicians (Billy Corgan, Thom Yorke, Bob Dylan, Victoria Legrand, etc.). Every person is approaching art from a different perspective, every one values art for different reasons. It's completely subjective. So, yes, the blank canvas that someone just hung on the wall and called it "emptiness" is art, I think. You might not get anything out of it. Maybe it didn't even take any talent to create. But it's still art because it's the meaningful expression of something. So, basically what I'm saying is screw the critics. Sure, it can be fun to read reviews. Sometimes it's even fun to write them. But I think I'd rather focus on the positive aspects of a piece of art and try to get something out of the art that I come across. (I'm not saying criticism isn't valid or other people shouldn't be picky about their art, but I'm just saying. It's not for me. And everyone, artists, critics, and audience members alike, should always keep in mind that all art is subjective and opinions are simply just opinions.)

I feel like I rant about that a lot. I guess it just bothers me when people make fun of other people for liking certain things, like The Killers or Twilight. Sure, Twilight is not a great classic work of literature, but it makes a lot of people happy to read it. So, basically, I'm sick of people who have this "I'm better than you because the art that I read/watch/observe/listen to is better and more intelligent that the art that you read/watch/observe/listen to." No, it's not. There is no quantifyable to way to argue that War and Peace is better than Twilight, even if most scholars would agree that it is. Basically, I think people should just let other people be happy and stop bitching about it. That's really what I'm tired of, I guess. Bitching. (And when I say bitching I don't mean "poking fun at" or "being sarcastic.") I'm not even saying that I don't bitch about things (because I certainly do), but I guess I just wish that people on a whole would be more positive about things, maybe myself included, or at least that's what I'm trying to do.

I'm not preaching or anything like that. I'm simply just rambling. Writing down my thoughts. I mean, I don't really know anymore than anyone else does.

Recently, my parents got me a record player for Christmas. My record collection is somewhat limited at the moment. (Probably due to the fact that I didn't have a record player before.) It consists of a Lou Reed record I bought for 3 dollars in Canada, two David Bowie records, The Boggles LIVE at the Star Bar in 2000, and two Beatles records that aren't technically mine (but I've been trying to get them back to their owner for a while and she seems to have forgotten about them...so does that make them mine? Or am I just holding them? Either way.) So, I've been listening to a record every night. It's sort of my bedtime ritual. I'll sit down, put a record on, and write in my journal. I'm quickly running out of records to listen to, though, so I'll soon have to dip into my parents' extensive collection. I've decided I'm just going to listen to all of them, even though I know some of them I probably won't like. It's good to give new things a shot, though.

The new Beach House album (which...isn't...technically out yet) is absolutely amazing. I can't stop listening to it. It's in my car, it's in my room, it's on my iTunes work playlist. It's just...incredible. I'm completely in love with it. I can't even explain to you why. Maybe that's why I can't be a CD reviewer, because I feel like words don't do music justice. Sometimes I just want to write a play where a character walks on stage and just plays a really amazing album and just sits in a chair and makes the audience listen to it. Somehow, I think I'd have a hard time getting a theatre to pick that one up, though. Haha.

Songs that were playing while I wrote this:
1. Read My Mind - The Killers
2. Rhinoceros - Smashing Pumpkins
3. Real Love - Beach House
4. Hail Mary - Pomplamoose
5. Phonytown - Rogue Wave
6. Like Treasure - Editors
7. Better Times - Beach House
8. One Love - Bob Marley

2010 is looking awesome so far - January artistic events in the Atlanta area 



Photo by Andrew Zucker

Hey everyone! First of all, Thanks for listening to my podcast! I got a lot of positive feedback on it so I'm definitely going to try to do more of those in the upcoming year. I'm thinking more podcasts in the whole "mix CD" format. They'll probably just be essentially me sharing awesome music with everyone.

Secondly, I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season, and I hope 2010 is treating you well so far. I rang in the New Year having an awesome time jamming out to the Sealions at the Highland Inn, and I am really looking forward to everything this year has in store.

10 reasons I am excited about 2010:

1. I'll be playing a lot of open mic nights, solo shows, and shows with my band, Long Absent Friends. I already have two solo shows lined up and two band shows.
2. THE 7TH HARRY POTTER MOVIE IS COMING OUT. (That's right.)
3. I'll be writing a play for the Horizon Theatre Apprentice Company to perform this spring.
4. New albums from Arcade Fire, Beach House, Massive Attack, the list goes on!
5. Due to my little brother being awesome, I will be going to see MUSE and the SILVERSUN PICKUPS in February!
6. My poetry book, Coiled and Swallowed, will be published from VergoGray Press sometime this summer or fall.
7. The final season of Lost. Maybe all of our questions will finally be answered.
8. I have gotten a book called The Daily Writer with writing exercises for every day. I've been doing them every day so far, and I really love them. It gives me a chance to stretch my writing muscles for a little bit every day.
9. I'll be starting graduate school with University of New Orleans Low Residency program (MFA in Playwriting) and traveling to Mexico for my first semester this summer!
10. Did I mention THE 7TH HARRY POTTER MOVIE?


There are a lot of things coming up in January in the Atlanta area that are worth checking out. So, let's get started.

My Events
In the Atlanta area...

MUSIC:
Here are some shows that you should check out.
OPEN MIC NIGHTS:
I've been compiling a list of open mic nights that I'm planning on going out to. Open mic nights are great for meeting other musicians, hearing some new voices, or just having a good time. A lot of people have asked me to share my liste of open mic nights that I'm going to check out, so here's what I have so far.
  • MaccrackensMondays - 9:00 pm - Marietta- I've been to this one before. Maccrackens is a really fun bar. Also, on the first Tuesday of every month (at 7:30 pm) The Play Pen has another open mic night there for not just musicians but also writers as well! (I'll be checking out that one tonight!)
  • Eddie's Attic - Mondays - 7:30 -  Decatur - National and local acts perform 2 songs each, with 3 finalists returning for a third song at the end of the evening for a chance to win a cash prize and a spot in the bi-annual, nationally acclaimed Open Mic Shootout. - Musicians - You have to sign up for this months in advance, but it's always a fun thing to do on Monday nights. I'll be playing in May of this year!
  • Ragamuffin - Thursdays - 8:00 - Roswell - I've never been to this open mic night before, but I've heard from other musicians that it's really cool. Actually, Michael (guitarist), Kyle (violinist), and I from Long Absent Friends will be going this Thursday, January 7, to play a short acoustic set. Come check it out!
  • Red Light Cafe - Wednesdays - 8:00 - Atlanta - I haven't been to the open mic night at this venue, but I've played a lot of shows there, and it's one of my favorite venues.
  • Rev Coffee – Wednesdays – 8:00 pm – Smyrna - This one is also new to me, but I've heard good things.
Let me know if you have any additional open mic nights for me to add to the list!


THEATRE:
Here are some cool shows that I'm hoping to check out.
  • The Cantebury Tales - The New American Shakespeare Tavern - January 1 - January 31 - Join us for a medieval romp through boisterous and bawdy olde England. Drawing on the Celtic British influences of Geoffrey Chaucer's writing, this hilarious adaptation reintroduces the tales in forms ranging from classical to spaghetti Western! We've got two new tales to tickle your fancy!
  • Good Boys and True - Actor's Express - Jan 14 - Feb 13 - It’s the 1980s and the boys at St. Joe’s Prep School are clean cut, well bred, Ivy League-bound – and having a lot of sex. When a scandal involving one little videotape threatens to grow beyond closed-door whispers to engulf the entire school, the ugly underpinnings of an elite machine threaten to give way. As one mother struggles to glean fact from fiction, she finds herself face to face with truths about her perfect son and their privileged existence. From one of the writers of the HBO hit “Big Love.”
  • Tranced - Aurora Theatre - Jan 14 - Feb 7 -  A Regional Premiere by Bob Clyman Directed by Susan Reid This suspenseful drama is a twisting tale of recovered memories and political intrigue.
  • On-Demand Reading of A THOUSAND CIRCLETS by Theroun D'arcy Patterson - Working Title Playwrights - Tuesday, Jan. 12 - Academy Theatre, 119 Center St., Avondale Estates, Ga. FREE to WTP members. $5 at-door suggested donation all others.


OTHER EVENTS:
  • January 23 - High Museum, Harper Dance Continuum Theatre presents 2 artists, 1 dancer and DJ Tabone. 8 pm in the atrium. - Artists Vickie Martin and Lance Carlson will paint with "HIGH allowed" material while Tracey Perkinson moves between two canvases of spandex - choreographed by Heather Harper

That's all I have so far. Feel free to add comments to the blog if I left anything out!

Holidays, Atlanta events, good times. 



Reticent by Gareth Botha


Well, December is upon us and there is a lot going on!

First of all, I have several announcements/upcoming events:
  • UNSENT LETTERS CD release - December 15th - On December 15th, I will release my debut album! It will be available here on the website for digital download for 5 dollars or you can order a physical copy for 7 dollars.
     
  • Unsent Letters CD release show at Smith's Olde Bar in the Atlanta Room - Friday, December 18th - 11:00 pm - 8 dollars - 21+ - Come out to Smith's Olde Bar where I will be playing a set and selling my CD (for just 5 dollars!). Come shoot some pool, drink some beer, and hear some music! I would absolutely love to see all of you there!
     
  • New Facebook Page - I have a new artist page on Facebook. So if you are on Facebook, be sure to become a fan for all of the updates, and suggest me to your friends!
     
  • Long Absent Friends shows - I am in a new band called Long Absent Friends, and we are playing our first shows ever coming up! We will be playing on December 27th at 10:00 pm at Smith's Olde Bar in the Atlanta Room and January 8th at 8:30 pm at Red Light Cafe. Come check it out! Especially if you are a fan of the Smashing Pumkins, Stars, Arcade Fire, and/or Broken Social Scene.
     
  • New links - Check out my links page for a couple of new things. For example, my brother, Kevin, has a new music blog which is pretty sweet.

THEATRE

December is a time for theatres to do Holiday shows! Actually, for a lot of theatres in Atlanta, a great portion of their ticket sales comes from these shows. (See this interesting article from Access Atlanta.) So make theatre part of your Holiday traditions!

Some of my favorites:
  • Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker - December 11 - 27 - Nutcracker has always been a Holiday tradition for me, and I absolutely love this production. (And not just because I played a toy soldier in it when I was 12! Haha.) Combine the beautiful dancing with the gorgeous costumes and set and the imaginative coreography...not to mention Tchaikovsky's classic and beautiful score...and it's really hard to go wrong.
     
  • A Christmas Carol - The Alliance Theatre - Nov 27 - Dec 24 - What is Christmas without a little Dickens? Alliance has always done an excellent job of staging this Holiday classic, and it's really just a fun show.

     
  • Santaland Diaries by David Sedaris - Horizon Theatre - Nov 27- Jan 3 - I have a personal relationship with this hillarious holiday show about an out-of-work 30-something writer who takes a job as an elf at Macy's. Last year, when I was working as an apprentice at Horizon, I did my crew/volunteer hours on this show, and I ran the spotlight. Even though I saw the show literally 30 something times, it was still funny. So check it out!
For more Holiday show listings, check out Access Atlanta or Atlanta Performs.


STAGED READINGS

  • Turning Pastoral by Matthew Katis - Saturday, December 12th - 7:00 pm - Kennesaw State University - FREE - Come out to this staged reading of CMU grad student, Matthew Katis's, new play. 
     
  • Working Title Playwrights presents The Scrapbook: A Modern Christmas Carol by Raymond Fast - Monday, December 14th - 7:30 pm - Academy Theatre - "You can't buy happiness. Nice thought - until you're money's gone. Since Gary's heart attack, he and wife Micki have lost their business, home, and savings. Now Gary thinks their kids and grandkids would be happier not traveling across country to visit them for Christmas. Can the memories awakened by a scrapbook remind Gary that love has no price tag, needs no trappings, and is worth more than anything money can buy?"
Come help these playwrights develop their new works! Your feedback is the most important thing for playwrights!


MUSIC

Three shows that I'm hoping to catch!

Well, that's it for me. If there are any December events that you'd like to mention, be sure to leave a comment here on the blog so that all of my readers can hear about it. :-)

Stay tunes for my Top 10 Albums of 2009. I'm thinking of doing this in a podcast as opposed to a blog so I can actually play some tracks for you. :-)


To my fellow artists 




Photo by Beverly Crawford

There is always going to be someone somewhere who doesn't like your art. There's always going to be some asshole who says that all of your songs sound the same and they're bored out of their mind when listening to them. There's always going to be the poetry editor who calls your poems "trite" and "cliche" and "amateur." There's always going to be the film festival who doesn't accept your film. There's always going to be the director who doesn't want to cast you in the play because they don't like the way you performed that one scene. There's always going to be the people who scoff at your paintings and turn up their noses. For every single piece of art that you put out there, whether your a singer/songwriter playing a show for five people at a coffee shop or Steven Spielberg releasing a new blockbuster film, someone somewhere is going to think that it's shit. (I have even been this person before! I've definitely been harshly honest about art I haven't liked before. But I said those things only after giving a disclaimer that the artists should take my opinion with a grain of salt.) That's because all art is completely subjective.

And for those of us who haven't had a "breakthrough" yet, for those of us who are unknown by most people, there are going to be way more rejections and criticisms than there are selections and praise. The trick is getting rejected over and over and over again and not caring. The trick is to keep going, to keep creating art, to stay true to yourself and your vision, no matter what anyone might say. And at the end of the day, it doesn't matter if you're famous. It doesn't matter if that breakthrough moment ever comes. You do it because it's who you are. It's what you love to do. I can't say I've gotten there completely. Every now and then I'll get a criticism or rejection that still stings. But I could never, ever stop writing or playing music or creating, no matter what anyone thinks.

There are moments, though, that make it all worth it. Standing ovations, getting an acceptance letter for once, when one person tells you that your song helped them in a way that so many songs have helped you. And I just wanted to say that even if no one reads this silly little blog of mine, I think it's important. Because there are so many artists that have helped me and inspired me over the years. And not just big artists like Radiohead and Neil Labute and Morrissey and Stephen Chbosky, but local playwrights and actors and theatre groups, local bands and musicians, local painters and photographers. There have been many moments, here in Atlanta, sitting at open mic nights at coffee shops and bars, watching bands at The Earl or The Star Bar or the Red Light Cafe, looking at art on the walls in Octane, sitting in the audience at Actor's Express or the Horizon Theatre, moments when art has inspired, touched, moved me, changed my perspective. Many local, independent, and unknown artists have caused these moments for me--too many to even name.

And I just wanted to say that. If you are an artist of any kind, and you're reading this, and you ever have those bad days filled with rejection letters and criticisms just keep in mind that probably somewhere someone had one of those life-changing moment with your work. And don't stop making your art. Don't get discouraged. Because there is a place for it. And you are someone's Morrissey, whether or not you know it.

KSU radio interview, my love for the Neil Labute and the New Moon soundtrack, daily Radiohead fix 

I had a really awesome time at KSU Owl Radio on Story with Amie Flanagan. It was kind of weird to be back on campus at KSU but not as a student. I actually parked in visitor parking, which made me feel odd. Or maybe "old" is a better word. Haha. Either way, I had a lot of fun on the show. We talked about Unsent Letters, my old bands, Painted and playwriting, how I hate it when people spell my name with an "h", other random things. I played "Cyclone" and "You Told Me" on air. Amie is a lot of fun, so everyone listen to her show! It comes on Mondays and Wednesdays at 10:00 am. She asked me if I wanted to come back sometime soon, so be on the lookout for that! Also, hopefully, I'll have a copy of the interview that I can put up here as a podcast file so you guys can listen if you didn't catch it yesterday.

Also, over the weekend, I went and saw This is How it Goes, a play by Neil Labute from Coup de Theatre Atlanta. It's a shame I waited until closing night to go see this play because I would have definitely recommended that everyone go check it out! It was just an excellent play. First of all, Neil Labute may be one of my favorite playwrights (The Shape of Things, Reasons to be Pretty). His plays are controversial, filled with unique structures and narratives, well constructed, and extremely thought-provoking. His characters are just so real and often extremely messed up. I really liked This is How it Goes for all of these reasons, but I think Coup de Theatre did an excellent job staging the brilliantly-written play. It was just well directed, well cast, well acted, well done. So good job, Coup de Theatre! This was the first show I've seen from them, and I'll definitely be checking out more as you all should, too. (PLUS, Radiohead playing at the beginning and/or end of a play or movie is always a great idea.)

Alright, I don't care what you Twilight-haters have to say, the Twilight Saga: New Moon soundtrack is out, and it is awesome. Highlights for me inclue Thom Yorke's mysterious "Hearing Damage," Lykke Li's poignant "Possibiliy", the sincere track, "Satellite Heart" by Anya Marina, "I Belong to You (New Moon Remix)" by Muse (which was also awesome on The Resistance, but I really like the remix), "Roslyn" by Bon Iver and St. Vincent whose voices blend perfectly together, and of course "Slow Life" by Grizzly Bear featuring Victoria Legrand (from Beach House). I was lucky enough to see Grizzly Bear and Beach House here in Atlanta a few weeks ago, and during Grizzly Bear's set, Victoria Legrand came back onstage to do "Slow Life" with them, which was an incredibly moving performance. So, there you go. We all know that the Twilight books are not going to be taught in literature classes in colleges or anything, and we all know Kristen Stewart is maybe the worst actress ever, but you just can't hate on a movie with that good of a soundtrack, people! (Even though it's not out yet.) (The Twilight books/movies are a bit of a guilty pleasure for me, though, I must admit and I'm very excited that this movie will combine my love for vampire books AND obscure indie bands. Who would have thought it?)

I've decided I should start posting more videos and photos in my blogs/on my website to make it more entertaining. I've had this song stuck in my head ever since they played it before This is How it Goes the other night. (Good choice, once again, Coup de Theatre!) So here is the "Song of the Day" I suppose.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E0NHCyVqFOc